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SWAROVSKI – MASTERS OF LIGHT From Vienna to Shanghai At MOCA, Shanghai September 20 to October 9, 2023

Swarovski 3 mins read

Swarovski’s first major brand exhibition makes its global premiere today at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Shanghai, showcasing the brand’s rich heritage including crystal-embellished couture pieces from Christian Dior, Gucci and Guo Pei alongside shimmering red carpet looks worn by pop icons Harry Styles and Rihanna.

Mapping a journey through time and space across the brand’s history since 1895, Swarovski - Masters of Light is the first exploration of the heritage and revolutionary spirit of one of the oldest European luxury brands. It showcases the creativity and savoir-faire that inspired its collaborations with the greatest names in fashion, cinema and music for over a century.

Swarovski - Masters of Light brings together for the first time an exceptional selection of over 60 outfits designed by the world’s most storied fashion houses. Spanning 128 years and all featuring Swarovski crystals, they include pieces created by Alexander McQueen, Armani Privé, Balenciaga, Christian Dior, Fendi, Gucci, Guo Pei, Jimmy Choo, Louis Vuitton, Robert Wun, Thierry Mugler and Vivienne Westwood.

It also includes an unprecedented curation of outfits worn by global pop culture icons including Michael Jackson, Christina Aguilera and Marilyn Monroe (courtesy Ted Stampfer).

In addition, Swarovski - Masters of Light displays a unique array of stage costumes and red-carpet ensembles drawn from the Swarovski Heritage Collection and presented to the public for the first time, as well as almost 1,000 dazzling pieces of Swarovski jewellery, figurines, and crystals, including the largest crystal chaton ever created.

The exhibition is an immersive experience, taking visitors on a journey from 19th century Vienna to 21st-century Shanghai and beyond through panoramic scenography divided into eight Chambers of Wonder: Time Chamber, Masters of Light, Future History, Jewellery Box, Pop Icons, Mathemagical and Diamonds of the Future.

Reflecting Swarovski’s close ties to contemporary art, the Beijing artist Tian Xiaolei has devised a site-specific installation, reacting to the themes and iconography of Swarovski through the facets of his own work.

Another highlight, to be unveiled for the first time in the Diamonds of the Future chamber, is ‘Galaxy’, the dazzling new fine jewellery collection designed by Global Creative Director Giovanna Engelbert and made with Swarovski Created Diamonds.

Alexis Nasard, Swarovski CEO, commented: ‘We are delighted to be designing and curating the Masters of Light exhibition in Shanghai. Being a cultural protagonist through our creations and artistic collaborations is an essential part of our heritage and values. We look forward to offering visitors in Shanghai a moment of beauty and joyful inspiration’.

Giovanna Engelbert, Swarovski Creative Director said:It is very emotional for me to see all these astonishing pieces together in our first brand exhibition, which is a celebration of craftsmanship and savoir-faire in every creative discipline. From conceptualisation to realisation, Masters of Light has been an extraordinary endeavour, and I could not be happier that the exhibition’s journey begins here in Shanghai, a city of culture and creativity, a hub of luxury and a global gateway. I am proud and humbled to be part of this incredible 128-year-old European luxury house that has the courage to continuously evolve into the future.

This landmark travelling brand exhibition is curated by British fashion journalist, author, critic, and curator Alexander Fury. It premieres in Shanghai, with further locations to be announced soon.

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Masters of Light Since 1895

Swarovski creates beautiful products of impeccable quality and craftsmanship that bring joy and celebrate individuality.

Founded in 1895 in Austria, the company designs, manufactures, and sells the world's finest crystals, Swarovski Created Diamonds and zirconia, jewellery, and accessories, as well as home décor. Swarovski Crystal Business has a global reach with approximately 2,300 stores and 6,600 points of sale in over 150 countries and employs 16,600 people. Together with its sister companies Swarovski Optik (optical devices) and Tyrolit (abrasives), Swarovski Crystal Business forms the Swarovski Group. A responsible relationship with people and the planet is part of Swarovski’s heritage. Today this legacy is rooted in sustainability measures across the value chain, with an emphasis on circular innovation, championing diversity, inclusion, and self-expression, and in the philanthropic work of the Swarovski Foundation, which supports charitable organisations bringing positive environmental and social impact.


Alexander Fury is a fashion journalist, author, critic, and curator. He is the fashion director of AnOther Magazine and the men's critic of the Financial Times.

Formerly, he held the role of fashion editor at the Independent newspapers (2013-2016) and chief fashion correspondent at T: The New York Times Style Magazine (2016-2018). In 2018, he received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco, and curated the 'Dress of the Year' at the Fashion Museum, Bath. Fury co-curated the 2022-23 'Forever Valentino' exhibition alongside Massimiliano Gioni and Pierpaolo Piccioli. In 2018, he wrote for the 'Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier' exhibition at the Design Museum, London, the first UK retrospective of the designer's work. Additionally, he curated media for 'The Vulgar: Fashion Redefined' exhibition (2016) and advised the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Fury has published monographs on fashion designers including Christian Dior, Vivienne Westwood and Chanel and contributed to numerous exhibition catalogues.                                                                                                                                      


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